Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2000-01-17-Speech-1-083"

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"Mr President, I too would like to congratulate the rapporteur on her excellent work. Over the coming years, faced with the challenges of globalisation and eastward enlargement, Europe will, more than ever before, require appropriate detailed guidance on how to plan and revitalise its economy. To this end, Europe as a whole, and each Member State individually, will have to make optimum use of all available resources and capacities, including the Structural Funds. For this to be possible, what we need from the European Commission are not just good intentions, but clearer guidelines and a firm commitment to monitoring the way these resources are used by the Member States. For example, in recent years Italy has had problems in utilising the Structural Funds, mainly because of excessive bureaucracy, insufficient information and a lack of involvement of economic and social operators at local level. There are, therefore, two points to which I would like to draw the Commission’s attention. Firstly, we need to make the best possible use of consultation as a means of ensuring proper coordination and participation by all local and regional operators in decision-making, precisely so that imbalances and inequalities can be avoided. Secondly, a genuine effort is required to make administrative procedures simpler and more transparent, since, they are all too often unnecessarily lengthy and complicated, to the point of hindering access to the Funds. This is something about which European small and medium-sized businesses, in particular, tend to complain. I will conclude, Mr President, by saying that the failure of the Commission’s communication to focus on territorial pacts and, especially, methods of combating unemployment among women and young people, is cause for serious concern."@en1

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